Trademarks are everywhere. They're embodied in logos and symbols (Nike's Swoosh), color schemes (John Deere's green and yellow), numbers (501 jeans), slogans ("Eat Fresh"), and even shapes (Method's product packaging). They're memorable. They distinguish products and services of one provider from those of another, ensuring that customers do not confuse their source. In fact, avoiding consumer confusion is trademark law's primary goal.
In the visual circus that has become the retail environment, the icon can be your most effective tool for communicating your brand s message and for connecting with your consumers.
Several months ago, a well-respected Fortune 500 consumer products corporation asked its design leader to fire his entire staff and re-hire them under the payroll of one of its pre-press consultants. As a reward for completing this awkward transition, the design manager was, in turn, laid off.
In the past few weeks I have heard marketing directors from three different large consumer packaged goods companies begin a strategic brand identity design discussion with the warning, "My brand needs significant enhancement, but don't to go too crazy.
Today's world is cluttered with messages. In this enviromnent, Rob Wallace urges simplicity. Powerful brands cut through perceptional noise with a memorably iconic and minimalist approach to colors and symbols. Case studies amplify the principles he advocates, and a three-step process outlines specific criteria managers can use to build designs that are visually clean and engaging.
I've spent the better part of 20 years on the package/brand identity design pulpit.With my colleagues in corporate and consultant design, I have tried to spread the gospel of package design's pre-eminent role in communicating the brand's core identity, its emotional essence, and its primary connection to consumers.
Brand extensions are more than twice as likely to succeed as new brands. With mega-brands like Crest extending to more than 80 SKUs in the United States alone and over 300 products worldwide, today's brands are not just expanding-they are hyper-proliferating.
A new set of design advocates is needed: individuals & organizations who aren't afraid to weigh the costs of design against marketplace results.
The value of being the genuine original cannot be overstated. Behaviorists like Malcolm Gladwell and Barry Schwartz recognize that in a sea of newness, we consumers find comfort in brands that are consistent, honest and real. We immediately recognize their familiar identities